For some people, the daily grind of city life is exhausting. Yet somewhere between busy streets there’s a mysterious cat café that can only be found by weary souls. What’s on the menu? A delicious cup of coffee, specially brewed for each customer…by a cat barista!
Source: Seven Seas
I should start out by saying that I did enjoy this manga. It's heartwarming and wholesome seeing these people being told words of affirmation and encouragement, and seeing how much they appreciate those simple words. The different drinks and food items which are served to accomodate the specific needs of each customer are also a nice touch. The only recurring customer character is Mitsubachi Kanae, who is a mistreated and overworked office worker. Mitsubachi's pupils are hexagons, which I found to be a cute detail. While I think this is nice, these sorts of manga that focus on the stresses people experience sorta rub me the wrong way in how they will often only focus on band-aid solutions and never actually acknowledge the systemic changes that need to occur. The band-aid solution in this particular manga is people feeling refreshed after visiting the cafe. Like, even just a passing mention that our economic and cultural structures need to change would be nice, and wouldn't prevent the series from focusing on the short-term alleviation of stress. But by not acknowledging the systemic stuff, it sorta implies that the current status quo is inevitable and that problems should be attributed to individual shitty people (like asshole bosses) instead being attributed to the way we as a society have collectively allowed things to be.
I found this randomly as the first volume as I bought it from the anime flea market of Tracon (a Finnish anine convention). Its cover art looked really inviting and I became intrigued by it. Story: Simple comfort read stories for broken souls. There's no need for coffee shop AUs here. This IS the coffee shop AU. It is extremely relaxing to read. Who wouldn't like to find a café that sells drinks customised for each individual's needs? And with a cat barista! A CAT barista!! And I was postively surprised, the stories weren't as filled with clichés as I was afraid of them to be. My personal favourite was the story of a closet otaku woman, who's afraid of telling about her hobby to her new boyfriend. Usually popular media tends to treat female nerds with the logic of "Oh, of course even nerds can be attractive. They just have to stop beinc nerds!" But no, in this manga, the barista simply says how delightful it is to watch people being passionate about something. And that is SO true! If something makes me happy, it is to watch people talking about something important for them, eyes glittering with enthusiasm! This manga feels weirdly fresh, even with its unoriginal consept. Art: Very pleasant to look at. Although I have to say, this manga's food isn't in my TOP 3 anime and manga food list. It sometimes looks a little bit bland (especially that crépe in the bonus chapter!) However, the characters are just adorable! They have really expressive faces, especially the cats! Oh, the cats. I love Hachi's (the cat barista) paws! I dunno, they are just so cute to look at! Characters: This manga is filled with likeable character. None of them are too complex, but hey, this only a two-volume long series. What surprised me positively was that the mangaka gave Hachi, Mr Cat Barista Man, an actual personality. Not something I would have expected. He first felt a little bit too similar to Baron from the Cat Returns (I like Baron's character, don't get me wrong). Also I love his little bro relationship with the another cat barista (yes, there's TWO of them). Overall: Sit down with a cup of coffee, tea, hot chocolate or whatever you prefer and enjoy this cozy little café story. *sigh* If only this café was real...
This is really just a cute realxed read! <3 The extra chapters was super adorable! >w< (SPOILER) This is a manga about a café run by a beast cat. In every chapter is there a person that has a problem and they go to the café and they get it solved. No one questions that it is a beastmen but you later finds out why.
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